DENVER -- Rudy Rodriguez is a 45-year-old Desert Storm veteran and Clyde is his 10-week-old chihuahua puppy.
"He's been with us about a month now. He's just the love of our life," Rodriguez said.
It didn't take long for the two to become best of friends.
"He's a family member, for sure," Rodriguez said.
But that almost came to an end when Rodriguez, his daughter Davernia and Clyde were in a car crash on Interstate 70 at Interstate 225 in Denver.
The car, driven by Davernia, became disconnected with the trailer it was towing and stopped along I-70 on the overpass.
Rodriguez stepped out to retrieve the trailer when he saw Davernia begin to drive across the lanes of traffic in front of an RTD bus.
"The bus came and she probably looked and as soon as she pulled out, the bus was coming around and it struck her first," Rodriguez said.
The car was totaled. No one was hurt. But Clyde was missing.
"Oh, Clyde. We gotta' look for Clyde. I went over, I called for him," Rodriguez said.
But Clyde was gone.
Or was he?
When Rodriguez stopped by the tow yard lot the next day to retrieve some belongings from his mangled car, he was shocked to see something he never dreamed possible.
"I opened this door here, and I found Clyde right underneath that seat. In the car, underneath the seat," he said.
After spending a cold, lonely night in a wrecked car in a tow lot, Clyde showed his gratitude to Rudy the only way a dog knows how, by licking his face and wagging his tail.
"He means a lot to me, a lot to all of us. And he's my little buddy, you know," Rodriguez said.